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“Bears” preschool storytime

Opening Song
I wiggle my fingers. I wiggle my toes.
I wiggle my ears. I wiggle my nose.
I wiggle my shoulders. I wiggle my chin.
I stretch my arms wide and pull them back in.
I wiggle my elbows. I wiggle my knees.
I hop like a bunny. I smile and say, “Cheese!”
Now I have no more wiggles left in me
And I sit on the floor as still as can be.
Source: Storytime with Jason

Book – There’s a Bear on my Chair by Ross Collins

Felt Board – A-hunting We Will Go
A hunting we will go, a hunting we will go!
We’ll catch a fox and put him in a box,
And then we’ll let him go.
mouse…put her in a house
frog…put him on a log
goat…put her in a boat
bear…put him in a chair
owl … put her in a towel
Source: King County Library System

Book – Big Bear, Small Mouse by Karma Wilson

Song-Preschool of Rock’s “Growing Bigger

This is Big
This is big, big, big.
(Stretch hands far to side)
This is small, small, small.
(Cup hands together over lap)
This is short, short, short.
(Hold palms horizontally, close)
This is tall, tall, tall.
(Hold palms horizontally, far apart)
This is fast, fast, fast. (roll hands quickly)
This is slow, slow, slow. (roll hands slowly)
This is yes, yes, yes. (nod)
This is no, no, no! (shake head)
Source: Mel’s Desk and (shameless self-promotion) Storyblocks

Book – Can You Growl like a Bear? by John Butler

Song: Caspar Babypants’ “Stompy the Bear” with felt board

Where is Bear?
Where is bear? Where is bear?
Here I am. Here I am.
How are you this winter?
Very tired, thank you.
Go to sleep. Go to sleep.
“WAKE UP BEAR”
Source: Storytime Katie

Here is a Cave
Here is a cave (Make a cave out of one hand)
Inside is a bear.
(Put your thumb into the cave)
Now he comes out
To get some fresh air. (Take thumb out)
He stays out all summer
In sunshine and heat.
He hunts in the forest
For berries to eat.
When snow starts to fall
He hurries inside
His warm little cave
And there he will hide.
(Put thumb back into the cave)
Snow covers the cave
Like a fluffy white rug.
Inside the bear sleeps
All cozy and snug.
(Place your other hand over the cave)
Source: Preschool Express

Goodbye
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as high as we can
Good-bye! (in high, squeaky voice)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as low as we can
Good-bye! (in a deep voice)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as fast as we can
Good-bye! (very quick)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as slow as we can
Good-bye! (very slowly and drawn out)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as quiet as we can
Good-bye! (in a whisper)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam
Let’s say good-bye as loud as we can
GOOD-BYE! (yelling)
Source: Jbrary

Early literacy tip: Exploring emotions through stories and books is a safe way to process potentially fearful situations and feelings. Kids can feel safe when reading these stories with trusted adults while at the same time still developing the critical thinking and problem solving skills needed to navigate unknown situations.

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“Hot Chocolate and a Movie” little ones event

For the past few years, December has been a notoriously low attendance month for our little ones events. I decided instead of putting together the normal STEM-type events with multiple stations and activities when only three families show up, I would take it easy on me and hold a hot chocolate and a movie event. And 50 people showed up! Gotta love the library world!

We had a hot chocolate station with marshmallows, coconut, candy canes, cinnamon, and sprinkles. I showed the movie A Stranger in the Woods, but the kids weren’t impressed. I may show Emmet Otter’s Jugband Christmas at our repeat events. (Emmet Otter is the least Christmas-y of all the Christmas movies. I am also biased because it it is my personal favorite holiday movie.) I also covered the floor in poly-fill type pillow stuffing to look like snow so we, of course, had an epic snowball fight.


I love the little boy licking his lips in the background!

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“My Tail’s Not Tired” bedtime yoga storytime

Opening – How I explain the rules of yoga storytime: stay on your mat, and keep your hands to yourself.
(Skip to my Lou –  from Jim Gill)
Clapping hands, one and two
Clapping hands, one and two
But if my hands were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling
(hands in Anjali mudra, or prayer position)

Extend and Stretch
Frere Jacques
Extend and stretch (sit in sukasana – easy seated pose, or crisscross applesauce- and do seated side bends)
Extend and stretch
Twist and turn (seated twists)
Twist and turn
This is yoga, (hands overhead on “this,” then bring to prayer position on “yoga”)
This is yoga
Om sweet om, (hands in prayer, bow forward)
Om sweet om
Source: I got this from Kids Yoga Guide teacher training, but here is another from Be Grace Yoga 

Sleeping Bunnies
See the little bunnies sleeping
Til it’s nearly noon?
Shall we wake them with a merry tune?
Oh so still
Are they ill?
Wake up, little bunnies!
Hop, little bunnies, hop, hop, hop
Hop, little bunnies, hop, hop, hop
Hop, little bunnies, hop, hop, hop
Hop, little bunnies, ‘til I say stop
Source: Russ (The original is not his, but I love his extra verses.)

Crown, Heart, Tail. I saw this when I observed a Kids Crave Yoga class. Ask the kids where their head or crown is. Then where is their heart. Then tail (or where their tail would be). Repeat. Shake up the order: Heart, tail, crown. Tail, tail, crown, heart. Go faster and faster, and then slow it down. I love that these movements correspond to the 1st, 4th, and 7th chakras.

Open the Book
Arms, legs, both
Close the book. Open the book. Turn the page.
Start seated with arms stretched out in front of you, palms touching. To “open the book,” stretch the arms wide. To close it, bring them back together. To “turn the page,” open just the right arm and close it, then the left arm and close it. Repeat “turning pages” until the kids giggle. Repeat the whole sequence using legs instead of arms. Then try arms and legs together. 

Book – Even Monsters Need to Sleep by Lisa Wheeler
-Boing/jump – Chair pose/ utkatasana and jump
-bottom wiggle – downward facing dog/adho mukha svanasana with wiggle
-tail – gate pose/ parighasana swinging from one side to other
– roly poly back – rock n roll pose
-voice/roar – lion’s breath/simhasana – Not too many; lion’s breath is VERY warming and energizing!
– fly like jet plane – warrior III/virabhadrasana III both sides

 

Forward folds
Forward folds are very calming and grounding. Here we moved from standing to sitting to folding in ourselves for even more of a centering effect.
– uttanasana
– paschimottanasana
– baddha konasana with fold

Savasana
Song: Kira Willey’s “When You Sleep” 

Peace begins with me
Hold both hands overhead. On the word “peace,” touch the thumbs and pinky fingers together. On the word “begins,” touch the thumbs and ring fingers. On the word “with,” touch the thumbs and middle fingers. On the word “me,” touch the thumbs and pointers. Repeat this four times, the first time loudly and hands overhead. The second time, bring the hands down a little and speak a little softer. The third time, bring hands lower and whisper. The last time, bring hands to knees and speak words silently to self.
Source: Kids Yoga Guide Teacher Training

Namaste!

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“Gratitude” yoga storytime

Opening – How I explain the rules of yoga storytime: stay on your mat, and keep your hands to yourself.
(Skip to my Lou –  from Jim Gill)
Stomping feet, one and two
Stomping feet, one and two
But if my feet were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling.

Clapping hands, one and two
Clapping hands, one and two
But if my hands were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling
(hands in Anjali mudra, or prayer position)

Are you Ready for Yoga? 
Are you ready for yoga?
If you’re ready, then stomp your feet
Stomp your feet and make some noise.
Let’s stomp our feet and make some noise
And do it really fast
Then stop. Stretch your feet up, up, up
And down.
Repeat with arms then both. 
Source: Next Generation Yoga at the National Kids Yoga Conference

Song: “Tick Tock Yoga Clock” – Karma Kids Yoga

Open the Book
Arms, legs, both
Close the book. Open the book. Turn the page.
Start seated with arms stretched out in front of you, palms touching. To “open the book,” stretch the arms wide. To close it, bring them back together. To “turn the page,” open just the right arm and close it, then the left arm and close it. Repeat “turning pages” until the kids giggle. Repeat the whole sequence using legs instead of arms. Then try arms and legs together. 

Book – Thank You, Bees by Toni Yuly
Sun – extended mountain/uttitha hasta tadasana
Thank you – For all the thanks, we bring our hands to our hearts in anjali mudra and bow while saying thank you.
bee – bumble bee breath
Sheep – downward facing dog/ adho mukha svanasana with kicks in the air
Clouds – start standing and forward fold/uttanasana, making sounds like rain
Tree – tree pose/vrksasana both sides
Dirt – flower pose
Earth – child’s pose/balasana

Song: Kidding Around Yoga’s “If You’re Happy and You Know It” Because expressing gratitude actually changes our brains to be happier! Or if you’re using this for Thanksgiving, check out the “Gobble  Gobble Turkey Wobble” song by KooKoo Kanga Roo!

Hoberman Sphere Breathing Ball

Savasana 

Peace begins with me
Hold both hands overhead. On the word “peace,” touch the thumbs and pinky fingers together. On the word “begins,” touch the thumbs and ring fingers. On the word “with,” touch the thumbs and middle fingers. On the word “me,” touch the thumbs and pointers. Repeat this four times, the first time loudly and hands overhead. The second time, bring the hands down a little and speak a little softer. The third time, bring hands lower and whisper. The last time, bring hands to knees and speak words silently to self.
Source: Kids Yoga Guide Teacher Training

Gratitude Trees from No Time for Flash Cards

Namaste!

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“Boxes” little ones event

We played with boxes for November’s little ones event. We held this event at the library on a Tuesday, at an outreach event  on Thursday, and again back at the library on Saturday.

I collected boxes of various sizes for kids to play with. I had no instructions out whatsover; my goal was for the kids to use their imaginations and problem solving/critical thinking skills to create whatever they wanted.

They made cars.
 

I love that this kiddo was using his yarn to “measure” his car.

This little girl said she was wearing a skirt.

He made a robot.

These girls didn’t want to build and just made crafts instead.

A lot of kids just wanted to sit in the boxes.

In fact, this little guy sat in this box for the entire duration of the program. He seemed happy about it.

Some kids made up a game of dropping balls into the boxes.

This kiddo went surfing on the boxes when most of the other kids had left. Probably not the safest of activities, but Mom seemed ok with it, and I am never one to stop gross motor development, since kids get so little of it now.

As always, I love when the adults get into it.

Some of the child care providers got together to make a tunnel, which they came back for later with a truck.

 

 

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“Stuffed Animal Sleepover” bedtime storytime 2017

Every year, I hold a stuffed animal sleepover in November. The kids come in for a pajama storytime at 6:30 pm.  They bring their stuffed animals, we read a few stories, and then they leave their animals with me overnight so I can “have a party with them.” They pick their animals up in the morning, and I print out copies of pictures for the kids to see what their animals have done.

See the storytime portion of this event here.

I have the kids fill out a permission slip for the animals to stay the night. (See above storytime for the form.) They list on the form some activities their animal likes to do, so I am able to snap some photos of them coloring, or reading about Harry Potter, or playing hide and seek.

The T-rex practiced his roars in a microphone.

The brother and sister llama and lion photocopied each other.

The brothers Dinosaur and BB-8 made each other into toilet paper mummies.

    

They all played follow the leader.

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“Pumpkin Destruction” all ages family event

When I attended the Children’s Museum conference Interactivity this past May, one of the sessions talked about how children need more sensory experiences outside and how destruction was just as important as construction. And Pumpkin Destruction Day was born. I searched for ideas of activities and came across this celebration from Rock Ranch. I modeled some activities after this, but ours was on a much smaller scale (and free!).

Tigges Farm is a local farm that we partner with on many occasions, and they were wonderful in their cooperation and help with this event.

I told parents to bring their Halloween pumpkins and any smashing toos they would like. I also provided a few rubber mallets.

We tossed pumpkins through hula hoops.

We bowled with pumpkins and 2-liters filled with sand.

However, to be honest, if I repeat this event next year, all we need to offer is the pumpkin smashing.

This boy started jumping on the pumpkins. Check out our video! However, some of the pumpkins were pretty rotten already so some sliding occurred. His back end was covered in pumpkin innards here.

This little guy smashed a gooey one that exploded all over him. He told me he was going to need a bath and then proceeded to smash another one.

This girl found one that looked like an apple.

I heard lots of parents discussing the physics of how the pumpkins fell apart, and I heard a family counting pumpkins. So many learning opportunities!

Tigges Farm outdid themselves for the finale. They hired a construction forklift for the pumpkin plummet!

We were even featured in the local newspaper!

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“Even Monsters Need to Sleep” bedtime yoga storytime

Opening – How I explain the rules of yoga storytime: stay on your mat, and keep your hands to yourself.
(Skip to my Lou –  from Jim Gill)
Clapping hands, one and two
Clapping hands, one and two
But if my hands were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling
(hands in Anjali mudra, or prayer position)

Extend and Stretch
Frere Jacques
Extend and stretch (sit in sukasana – easy seated pose, or crisscross applesauce- and do seated side bends)
Extend and stretch
Twist and turn (seated twists)
Twist and turn
This is yoga, (hands overhead on “this,” then bring to prayer position on “yoga”)
This is yoga
Om sweet om, (hands in prayer, bow forward)
Om sweet om
Source: I got this from Kids Yoga Guide teacher training, but here is another from Be Grace Yoga 

Sun Salutations – Halloween version from KidPowerment Yoga
Hello, bats. Flap, flap, flap
Hello, worms. Squirm, squirm, squirm.
Place your hands on the floor. 1,2
And step back. 3,4
Lower your belly to the leaves on the floor.
Aoooo. howl at the moon so pale
Lift up to shake your werewolf tail
Bend your knees. Jump your feet up please.
Take a deep breath in
And feel the magic deep within.
Check out our video!

Song: Wee Sing’s “The Bats are All Asleep
cat – cat pose/marjariasana
ghosts – virabhadrasaba III/Warrior III
witches – warrior II/virabhadrasana II
skeleton – goddess/utkata konasana
goblin – malasana/garland

 

Crown, Heart, Tail. I saw this when I observed a Kids Crave Yoga class. Ask the kids where their head or crown is. Then where is their heart. Then tail (or where their tail would be). Repeat. Shake up the order: Heart, tail, crown. Tail, tail, crown, heart. Go faster and faster, and then slow it down. I love that these movements correspond to the 1st, 4th, and 7th chakras.

Open the Book
Arms, legs, both
Close the book. Open the book. Turn the page.
Start seated with arms stretched out in front of you, palms touching. To “open the book,” stretch the arms wide. To close it, bring them back together. To “turn the page,” open just the right arm and close it, then the left arm and close it. Repeat “turning pages” until the kids giggle. Repeat the whole sequence using legs instead of arms. Then try arms and legs together. 

Book – Even Monsters Need to Sleep by Lisa Wheeler
Bigfoot – tree/vrkshasana
aliens – UFO= child’s pose/balasana
dragon – lion’s breath/simhasana – Not too many; lion’s breath is VERY energizing!
Frankenstein – soldier kicks
yeti – bear crawls
troll – bridge/setu bandha sarvangasana
Lochness monster – balancing table pose  Long neck and tail like Nessie
giant – 5 pointed star

 

Forward folds
Forward folds are very calming and grounding. Here we moved from standing to sitting to folding in ourselves for even more of a centering effect.
uttanasana
paschimottanasana
baddha konasana with fold

Savasana
Song: Kira Willey’s “When You Sleep” 

Peace begins with me
Hold both hands overhead. On the word “peace,” touch the thumbs and pinky fingers together. On the word “begins,” touch the thumbs and ring fingers. On the word “with,” touch the thumbs and middle fingers. On the word “me,” touch the thumbs and pointers. Repeat this four times, the first time loudly and hands overhead. The second time, bring the hands down a little and speak a little softer. The third time, bring hands lower and whisper. The last time, bring hands to knees and speak words silently to self.
Source: Kids Yoga Guide Teacher Training

Namaste!

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“Tickle Monster” Story Explorers preschool bookclub

Tickle Monster CLEL Bell award is a winner in the ECRR2 category of PLAY.

Song: “Monster Boogie” – Laurie Berkner Band

Read Tickle Monster by Edouard Manceau.

We made our own tickle monsters. I gave the kids safety scissors, but I had regular scissors available for the adults since felt is so difficult to cut.

I had to get in on the game too.

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“The Giant Jumperee” yoga storytime

Opening – How I explain the rules of yoga storytime: stay on your mat, and keep your hands to yourself.
(Skip to my Lou –  from Jim Gill)
Stomping feet, one and two
Stomping feet, one and two
But if my feet were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling.

Clapping hands, one and two
Clapping hands, one and two
But if my hands were covered in glue
I’d stick to the glue, my darling
(hands in Anjali mudra, or prayer position)

Are you Ready for Yoga? 
Are you ready for yoga?
If you’re ready, then stomp your feet
Stomp your feet and make some noise.
Let’s stomp our feet and make some noise
And do it really fast
Then stop. Stretch your feet up, up, up
And down.
Repeat with arms then both. 
Source: Next Generation Yoga at the National Kids Yoga Conference 

Sun Salutations – Halloween version from KidPowerment Yoga
Hello, bats. Flap, flap, flap
Hello, worms. Squirm, squirm, squirm.
Place your hands on the floor. 1,2
And step back. 3,4
Lower your belly to the leaves on the floor.
Aoooo. howl at the moon so pale
Lift up to shake your werewolf tail
Bend your knees. Jump your feet up please.
Take a deep breath in
And feel the magic deep within.
Check out our video!

Monster Feet
I got this idea from one of my childcare provider attendees. She thought it would be perfect with a boot print for snow activities, and I thought it would work with monster feet too!

Song: “Apple Tree” by Bari Koral

Open the Book
Arms, legs, both
Close the book. Open the book. Turn the page.
Start seated with arms stretched out in front of you, palms touching. To “open the book,” stretch the arms wide. To close it, bring them back together. To “turn the page,” open just the right arm and close it, then the left arm and close it. Repeat “turning pages” until the kids giggle. Repeat the whole sequence using legs instead of arms. Then try arms and legs together. 

Book – The Giant Jumperee by Julia Donaldson and Helen Oxenbury
I started all the poses at the back of the mat. We would move to the front of the mat like the animal, and then when the Giant Jumperee yells from the burrow, we would return to the back of the mat, scurrying like whatever animal we were at the time.
rabbit – hop to the front
cat – cat pose/marjariasana
bear – bear crawls
elephant – wide legged forward fold/prasarita padottonasana holding hands like an elephant trunk and then exhaling down, trumpeting like and elephant.
frog –  malasana/garland
all animals laughing – happy baby/ananda balasana


Song: “The Bats are All Asleep” – Wee Sing
cat – cat pose/marjariasana
ghosts – virabhadrasaba III/Warrior III
witches – warrior II/virabhadrasana II
skeleton – goddess/utkata konasana
goblin – malasana/garland

Breathing Ball

Savasana 

Peace begins with me
Hold both hands overhead. On the word “peace,” touch the thumbs and pinky fingers together. On the word “begins,” touch the thumbs and ring fingers. On the word “with,” touch the thumbs and middle fingers. On the word “me,” touch the thumbs and pointers. Repeat this four times, the first time loudly and hands overhead. The second time, bring the hands down a little and speak a little softer. The third time, bring hands lower and whisper. The last time, bring hands to knees and speak words silently to self.
Source: Kids Yoga Guide Teacher Training

 

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